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00's Ulster football was beautiful | GAA on OTB

John Duggan was joined by former Tyrone player Enda McGinley and Armagh's Enda McNulty to look ba...

Joseph Conroy
Joseph Conroy

20:02 20 Jun 2020



00's Ulster football was beaut...
Football

00's Ulster football was beautiful | GAA on OTB

Joseph Conroy
Joseph Conroy

20:02 20 Jun 2020

John Duggan was joined by former Tyrone player Enda McGinley and Armagh's Enda McNulty to look back at their great rivalry on today's OTB GAA panel.

Deep into the conversation, John put the simple question to the former-foes, "Was the football good?"

"To be honest, it stands up well," Enda McGinley answered.

"It was 'kamikaze,' it wasn't very controlled or contrived, the way the modern game has went. So, it still looks good.

"You have stunning, talented players, playing at the very top of the game.

"We're speaking of the likes of Stephen McDonald, Oisín McConville, Stephen O'Neill, Brian McGuigan. Those players, some of the things they did in those games were immense."

28 September 2003; Tyrone captain Peter Canavan lifts the Sam Maguire cup. Bank of Ireland All-Ireland Senior Football Championship Final, Armagh v Tyrone, Croke Park, Dublin. Picture credit; Matt Browne / SPORTSFILE *EDI*

"It was the sheer physicality, the aggression by teams. Neither team giving an inch.

"Whilst it might not have been for the purists - I'd say it still is massively entertaining. When you look back at them, you can't deny the quality coming from the fact that you had two teams at the very top of the game, going at each other as if their lives depended on it.

"I don't think you can ask for more that that from a GAA point of view," he reflected.

Enda McNulty continued, "I think the football was great John."

gaa 28 September 2003; Eoin Mulligan, Tyrone, in action against Enda McNulty, Armagh. Bank of Ireland All-Ireland Senior Football Championship Final, Armagh v Tyrone, Croke Park, Dublin. Picture credit; David Maher / SPORTSFILE *EDI*

"If you think about some of the players on the pitch, Enda listed a number of them, some of those players arguably were as good as any player in the last 50 years."

"Some of those footballers would get in any team in Ulster in the last 50 years, maybe even any team in an All Ireland series in the last 50 years."

The All Ireland-winner also praised the intelligence of that generation of Ulster talent:

"They had the ability to coordinate the offence and defence. Some of the things that happened during those years, that defensive system a still formidable in today's game."

gaa 28 September 2003; Tyrone fans celebrate on the pitch after victory over Armagh. Bank of Ireland All-Ireland Senior Football Championship Final, Armagh v Tyrone, Croke Park, Dublin. Picture credit; Ray McManus / SPORTSFILE

He believes that the 00's 'Ulster' brand of football and the introduction to a more 'system-based' approach to the game has left an imprint on the sport:

"Did it make the game better or worse? Your listeners today can argue about whether it made the game better or worse. But it certainly shifted the game in terms of the tactical evolution."

00's Ulster football was beautiful | GAA on OTB

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All-ireland Armagh Enda McNulty Enda Mcginley Football GAA Tyrone

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